The novel Nobel of Baku by Amir Pahlavan tells the story of the famous Swedish Nobel-Family and their activities in the oil industry of Baku in Azerbaijan. Ismayel, the main character of the novel, experiences his country as an independent nation when he returns after 70 years of emigration. By observing the changing times and discovering the differences between the past and the present, the reader is also immersed in the fascinating collision-course of memories. Readers get to know stories of the beginning of oil production and of the monopoly conditions of the Baku oil industry and especially the long term fates of local people against the background of hard global political collisions.
I did not know what to expect until the plane landed. I was that person who had known nothing about planes till the age of twenty. And now I was flying to my Motherland – Azerbaijan, having spent most of my life in Europe. The idea of being a European citizen and one of the expellees – because of a genius, because of our family’s close relations with the Nobels – still surprises me. Nobel was from Sweden by origin, and I was from Baku. He had lived in Baku as I lived in Europe, though I did not live as he had done. He had been the owner of a large amount of capital in Baku, but I was an ordinary person who had found a common shelter in Europe. He had been the manufacturer who had drawn the attention of the whole world, but I was an ordinary person who envied that personality.